The idea of networking can be anxiety-provoking for many, no matter what career stage they’re in, leading some to avoid it. Yet, it still remains the number one strategy to land opportunities and an essential component of one’s career development.
Networking is more than talking to strangers; it is a process of building relationships towards a mutual exchange of support, resources, and information. It is also a way of letting others know your skills and passions and getting noticed in the field. (You can’t get noticed if people don’t know you!)
Not sure how to get started? Then lead with your curiosity.
Perhaps you’re wondering what you can do with your degree or concentration or how others with similar backgrounds and experiences landed their roles. Or maybe you’re still exploring and want to know different opportunities you might find meaningful. Find people with direct knowledge of your interest area and start a conversation:
- Faculty, supervisors and colleagues in field, peers, and alumni currently working in your field of interest
- Professionals you admire regardless of their background whom you can connect with through industry events, professional associations, or virtual networking communities, such as those on LinkedIn
- Recruiters, hiring managers, and organizational representatives hosting information sessions and related recruitment and networking activities
Don’t forget that professionals outside your immediate scope of interest can also possess valuable insights, including how to effectively transition from student to professional, advance to leadership positions, or maintain work-life balance and self-care.
Whomever you choose to reach out to, make sure to tailor your conversation to the individual and assess what specifically you hope to learn from them so you can identify your next steps.
If the idea of networking and informational interviewing still feels intimidating, remember that you don’t need to know everything to have a fruitful conversation. Asking questions like “How do I get started?” or “Where do I go from here?” are acceptable conversation starters, particularly with social work educators and alumni. The main goal is to start somewhere!
More on networking for social workers
Shared by the NASW-NYC Chapter:
The NASW-NYC CARES Member Ambassador program is proud to present the second virtual student symposium, designed to support NYC social work students, on Wednesday, April 7, 2021 at 7:00 pm EST. Based on the overwhelming responses from attendees of the student town hall held in the fall semester that focused on student experience in the era of virtual learning, the spring 2021 student symposium will focus on field placement in the COVID-19 environment.
The goals for this event:
- Discuss and share field placement experiences in the COVID-19 environment
- Hear from social work professionals who work in field placement
- Network with students of social work and social work professionals in NYC
- Get insight, resources, and tips for your own field placement journey
- Get updated on how you can become involved and engaged with the chapter if you’re a new grad or soon to graduate
Visit www.naswnyc.org/SpringSS2021 to register and learn more.
ADA accommodation requests and questions should be emailed to [email protected].
This is a FREE event open to all NYC students of social work!
Open to both NASW Members & Non-Members!
First Year Students Encouraged to Join!
Shared by the NASW-NYC Chapter:
The NASW-NYC Chapter is proud to announce the first NASW-NYC Social Work Month Series:
Committed to promoting the value and visibility of the social work profession and enhancing the profession’s credibility and influence at state and local levels, the NASW-NYC has designed various events over the course of the month that speak to the scope of social work.
This Social Work Month series is designed to offer opportunities for engagement, networking, learning, and more to social workers across the five boroughs, reminding us all of the essential importance of social workers and exemplifying the 2021 Social Work Month theme of NASW. In the era of COVID-19 and the changes and issues it has brought, this series hopes to encourage and support our NYC social workers.
The series is FREE (unless otherwise indicated) and open to all social workers of all levels and fields, including students.
WEEK ONE of the Social Work Month Series includes L.E.A.D and a FREE CE Opportunity with the NYC Commission on Human Rights worth 2 CE Contact Hours!
Click here to view the full schedule and details and to register.
Questions about the NASW-NYC Social Work Month Series should be directed to [email protected]
The Office of Alumni Relations and Office of Career Services and Leadership Management are pleased to resume our career mentorship program for the spring semester!
The program will run from Monday, February 1 through Friday, May 28. Requests will be accepted until Friday, May 14.
Mentoring Program Overview
Through this program, students can request to connect with up to 3 alums per month for 1:1 conversations to:
- Gain insights and perspectives about a career path, field, organization, or industry;
- Get advice about career planning, searching and applying for jobs (including resume writing), networking, interviewing, or navigating life after CSSW; OR
- Seek support in general from someone who’s been in your shoes as a student
- Fill out this mentoring program interest form. On the form, you will find a link to a directory with a list of more than 300 alumni volunteer mentors who are eager to meet you! Select the one you’re interested in meeting. Note that you will have to complete this form for each request.
- After submitting the form, you will receive an email confirmation as well as an introductory email from Jennifer March from Alumni Relations connecting you to the alum of choice within a few business days. If you don’t hear from Jennifer in that time frame, please email her directly at [email protected] to follow up.
- Once you receive the email, it will be your responsibility to arrange a meeting directly with the alum using the contact information provided. While Zoom meetings are recommended, you can choose a platform that works best for both you and the alum.
Remember: This is NOT a forum to ask for a job or a recommendation for a job, but rather an opportunity to gather valuable information based on their knowledge and expertise.
After the initial meeting, it will be up to you and the alum to decide whether to continue to stay in touch.
For general questions about our alumni mentors, please email Jennifer March at [email protected].
For guidance on how to prepare for a meeting, refer to our Informational Interview Guide. You can also view free, on-demand webinars on informational interviewing (and other career development topics) from LinkedIn Learning, or schedule an appointment with the career team to discuss further.
We hope you take advantage of this special opportunity!
Want to learn more about potential AGPP career paths after graduation?
Join AGPP Caucus Leaders on January 27 at 12:30pm where they will be speaking to alumni about their career paths post Columbia and how their careers have been impacted by their experiences of being in the AGPP track! See below for details.
If you have any questions for the panelists, please fill out this survey.
Date: Wednesday, January 27
Time: 12:30 – 1:30 PM
Join via Zoom (Meeting ID: 958 0656 2839)
Want to learn about organizations seeking your talent? During the spring term, a number of employers will be hosting recruitment and information sessions on opportunities for graduating students and alumni.
Take advantage of these events to connect with recruiters and hiring managers, learn about their organization, gain insight into what they’re looking for in candidates, and enhance your chances of landing a job!
Here are some tips to make the most of the events and to stand out:
- Research the organization beforehand to get a sense of their services, impact, and the communities they serve.
- Be prepared to share a quick introduction about your interests, strengths, and career goals.
- Present your best self to make a strong first impression by following good video meeting etiquette, which includes keeping an appropriate background and dressing for the workplace (i.e. no pajamas!)
- Prepare and ask thoughtful questions that demonstrate your knowledge, interest, and curiosity to learn more about their organization, values, and culture. You can also inquire about opportunities for growth, training, and professional development, as well as transferable skills they value, especially if you are a career changer or don’t yet meet certain requirements.
- Have an updated resume readily available. Some employers ask for resumes before or after the event. Follow the instructions provided by the career office or employer on how and where to submit your resume for consideration.
- After the event, follow up to personally thank them (BONUS: Reference something you learned from the session to make yourself even more memorable!)
NOTE: Some events may be presentation style, while others, interactive. Be prepared to engage accordingly. We recommend keeping your camera on or at least when asking questions but understand if that may not be feasible for some. Engagement can also include commenting in the chat and unmuting to ask a question when appropriate.
The Child Center of NY will be holding a Virtual Social Work & Helping Professionals Conference & Recruitment Event on Monday, November 30th from 5:00 pm – 6:30 pm. See below for details.